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Pathfinder 2E Rules Question: Engulf, Constrict, Grab

Filthy Lucre

Explorer
Howdy All,

I've got a question that I'd like clarification on: If X has Y grabbed and X has the constrict or engulf ability...

  • If X constricts Y 3 times on their turn, would that mean that at the end of X's turn Y is no longer grabbed?
  • If X engulfs Y, does X need to use an action to grab to maintained the grabbed/engulfed condition? OR is Engulf a separate condition, with it's own method of resolution/rules, and it just so happens that IF you are engulfed, then you are also grabbed?
  • If X has engulfed Y on X's previous turn, could X constrict 3 times and still maintane their grab by virtue of the creature being engulfed?
 

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Justice and Rule

Adventurer
Howdy All,

I've got a question that I'd like clarification on: If X has Y grabbed and X has the constrict or engulf ability...

  • If X constricts Y 3 times on their turn, would that mean that at the end of X's turn Y is no longer grabbed?

RAW, that seems to be right. If you want to maintain the grab, you have to spend the action.

  • If X engulfs Y, does X need to use an action to grab to maintained the grabbed/engulfed condition? OR is Engulf a separate condition, with it's own method of resolution/rules, and it just so happens that IF you are engulfed, then you are also grabbed?

It's not expressly defined in the rules, though personally I'd say Engulfed is not Grabbed and thus doesn't need to spend a turn maintaining it. I can see arguments either way, though.

EDIT: Actually, I'm going to say that's RAW. Upon looking it up, the maintenance action only appears under the action Grab and is even called out in Improved Grab. It does not mention it in the Engulfed action, nor is it included in the Grabbed condition, which is what is actually mentioned in the Engulf action.

  • If X has engulfed Y on X's previous turn, could X constrict 3 times and still maintane their grab by virtue of the creature being engulfed?

I'd say yes. Watch the fuck out for oozes, yo.
 
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Filthy Lucre

Explorer
It's not expressly defined in the rules, though personally I'd say Engulfed is not Grabbed and thus doesn't need to spend a turn maintaining it. I can see arguments either way, though.
As per the "Engulf" rules entry:

"...A creature that fails its save is pulled into the monster’s body. It is grabbed, is slowed 1, and has to hold its breath or start suffocating..."

This leads me to the interpretation that as long as you are engulfed, you are also grabbed. So I agree with you that if something is engulfed the engulf-er does not need to use the grab action to maintain the 'grabbed' condition, since that condition is derived from engulf, which has it's own specifically outlined method of escape.
 

Justice and Rule

Adventurer
As per the "Engulf" rules entry:

"...A creature that fails its save is pulled into the monster’s body. It is grabbed, is slowed 1, and has to hold its breath or start suffocating..."

This leads me to the interpretation that as long as you are engulfed, you are also grabbed. So I agree with you that if something is engulfed the engulf-er does not need to use the grab action to maintain the 'grabbed' condition, since that condition is derived from engulf, which has it's own specifically outlined method of escape.

Yeah, I edited my response in looking it over on Nethys a bit more. The maintenance requirement seems to apply to the kind of action used to put on the grabbed condition and does not apply more generally to the grabbed condition itself.
 



CapnZapp

Legend
Howdy All,

I've got a question that I'd like clarification on: If X has Y grabbed and X has the constrict or engulf ability...

  • If X constricts Y 3 times on their turn, would that mean that at the end of X's turn Y is no longer grabbed?
  • If X engulfs Y, does X need to use an action to grab to maintained the grabbed/engulfed condition? OR is Engulf a separate condition, with it's own method of resolution/rules, and it just so happens that IF you are engulfed, then you are also grabbed?
  • If X has engulfed Y on X's previous turn, could X constrict 3 times and still maintane their grab by virtue of the creature being engulfed?
First off monsters grab while heroes grapple. Different rules apply.

With very few exceptions a grab ends at the end of the monster's turn, unless that monster spends an action maintaining the grab. (No rolls required, you just don't use one action for anything else). This applies even if the monster has Improved Grab - unless one action is spent on maintain, the hero is freed at the end of the monster's turn.

1) So unless the monster you're referring is a special exception, the fact it spent three actions on Constrict means there is no action left to maintain. (For instance, even having Haste/Quickened wouldn't help since few such abilities allow you to spend the extra action on either Constrict or Maintain) So the answer is yes, the hero is no longer grabbed when the monster's turn ends.

2) Yes, you don't need to maintain an Engulf.

3) Yes, assuming you can constrict an engulfed creature. A snake, say, would not be able to do this, since it can no longer target a creature that is engulfed. But I'm sure there exists a special monster able to constrict an engulfed creature with its stomach muscles or something. (To be clear: my answer in the general case is "no")
 
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Filthy Lucre

Explorer
3) Yes, assuming you can constrict an engulfed creature. A snake, say, would not be able to do this, since it can no longer target a creature that is engulfed. But I'm sure there exists a special monster able to constrict an engulfed creature with its stomach muscles or something. (To be clear: my answer in the general case is "no")
The rules text for the Constrict ability: "The monster deals the listed amount of damage to any number of creatures grabbed or restrained by it. Each of those creatures can attempt a basic Fortitude save with the listed DC."

Rules text for the Engulf ability: "...A creature that fails its save is pulled into the monster’s body. It is grabbed, is slowed 1, and has to hold its breath or start suffocating..."

Ergo, any creature that has both the engulf ability and the constrict ability can engulf it's target on turn 1, then constrict, without needing to use the Grab action to maintain the grabbed status, because the grabbed status is maintained by virtue of the target being engulfed.

Example:

Turn 1: Monster Engulfs (2A) and then Constricts (1A)
Turn 2: Monster Constricts 3 times, (3A)
Turn 3+: Keep on squeeze'n.
 
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Justice and Rule

Adventurer
The rules text for the Constrict ability: "The monster deals the listed amount of damage to any number of creatures grabbed or restrained by it. Each of those creatures can attempt a basic Fortitude save with the listed DC."

Rules text for the Engulf ability: "...A creature that fails its save is pulled into the monster’s body. It is grabbed, is slowed 1, and has to hold its breath or start suffocating..."

Ergo, a creature that has engulfed a target is grabbing them and can constrict 3 times without needing to use the Grab action to maintain the grabbed status, because the grabbed status is maintained by virtue of the target being engulfed.

Several creatures do have the ability to Constrict as well as Engulf, too. Carnivorous Blobs and Giant Amoebas (who have their own sort of "Engulf" action that involves pulling something in rather than running it over) have both traits.
 


CapnZapp

Legend
Several creatures do have the ability to Constrict as well as Engulf, too. Carnivorous Blobs and Giant Amoebas (who have their own sort of "Engulf" action that involves pulling something in rather than running it over) have both traits.
I googled constrict engulf site:2e.aonprd.com/Monsters.aspx and received five hits: Carnivorous Blob, Giant Amoeba, Shoggoth, Wemmuth.

So it exists but not exactly common.

PS. Sadly constrict and engulf are actions, not traits. So I see no way of filtering for them directly.
 

Justice and Rule

Adventurer
I googled constrict engulf site:2e.aonprd.com/Monsters.aspx and received five hits: Carnivorous Blob, Giant Amoeba, Shoggoth, Wemmuth.

So it exists but not exactly common.

PS. Sadly constrict and engulf are actions, not traits. So I see no way of filtering for them directly.

I just went down the list of Oozes, since those generally have Engulf. But yeah, being able to filter for actions would be a nice feature for AON.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
Example:

Turn 1: Monster Engulfs (2A) and then Constricts (1A)
Turn 2: Monster Constricts 3 times, (3A)
Turn 3+: Keep on squeeze'n.
It needs to be said that fighter-y heroes will not have a hard time escaping getting swallowed, even by specialized creatures.

The threat is for caster-y heroes.

This is because of the "either you've got it or you don't" nature of PF2 skills.
 

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